As Christmas approaches James and I have discussed at length the question of whether or not to tell Cecilia there is a Santa Claus, North Pole, flying Reindeer, elves, etc.
The brief answer is no, we are not going to pretend there is a Santa, for Cecilia or any of our children.
Here are our reasons why…
Saint Nicholas was a 4th century bishop who was famous for his generous gifts to the poor, in particular presenting the three impoverished daughters of a pious Christian with dowries so they could marry. His feast day is December 6th. St. Nicholas became the origin for the myth that flourished in the form of a jolly and generous red-suited and white-bearded man who gave gifts in celebration of the Incarnation, that is, the birth of our Savior Jesus Christ. I must say, not a bad foundation for such a myth. Basically though, Santa became a symbol for the charitable joy we all should demonstrate at the birth of our Savior. It is for this reason, that we have nothing whatsoever against the myth of Santa in and of itself.
We cannot ignore the violent assault waged against Christ and his birth at Christmas by the ACLU, retailers and many politicians who want to makes millions of dollars in Christmas sales and have “holiday” parties but make it illegal to have a nativity within public view. Meanwhile, it has become socially acceptable to replace the nativity with a Santa Claus as a Christian symbol of Christmas making Santa not a heart-warming symbol of the spirit of Christmas but rather a replacement for the whole reason for Christmas – Jesus Christ.
Hence, while we both enjoy Bing Crosby’s Santa Claus is Coming to Town and I enjoy wearing a Santa hat, since outside our home there is little we can do to stop the deletion of Christ from Christmas and the obsession with Santa as a replacement for Jesus, we intend to keep our home Christ-centered throughout Advent and the Christmas season and this means Cecilia and any brothers or sisters she may have will grow up knowing Santa Claus as no more than a warm-hearted symbol for the generous giving of God in his gift of his only Son on Christmas Day.